Representatives from Lord Cultural Resources (Toronto) and Ralph Applebaum Associates (New York City) were introduced to the landscape of the Buffalo River along with some local residents of the area. The boat tour was part of a three day conference hosted by the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp.(ECHDC). The presentation attempts to show the need to develop an Erie Canal Gateway Visitors Center as central to the design for the Canal Side Project at the Erie Canal Terminus site in downtown Buffalo, NY. The purpose of the Center is imagined as an innovative 21st century hub pointing to all existing cultural institutions and lifelong learning programs dealing with art, architecture, history, and nature in the entire Niagara Region in both the USA and Canada.
Seen as a gateway to the region and its future, the Erie Canal Terminus site would once again invite visitors to explore new experiences and buildings and structures, many of which are listed as National Historic Landmarks or State & National Registers of Historic Places. The Edward M. Cotter is, in fact, one of the nine National Historic Landmarks in Buffalo and 261 in New York State (http://buffaloah.com/a/cotter/cotter.html).